If you want to give a powerful presentation, you must accomplish two things at the same time. On one hand you need to move people emotionally on a personal level – you need to engage them emotionally, address their intimate desires and fears if you really want to make an impact. On the other hand, it must be a communal experience, because you’re not talking one to one, but one to many. This combination of personal and communal experience is one of the reasons why public speaking is such a powerful way of changing minds and hearts.
A really good public presentation is really a lot more emotionally engaging than it is intellectually engaging – at least as long as you’re in the room with the audience. While you’re talking and presenting, you want people to FEEL, not to think. Thinking is what they should do afterwards – and if you’ve moved them enough emotionally, thinking is something that will happen certainly later on, after the emotions have been processed. However, if you’re engaging them only on a rational level, where they are thinking during your presentation, the impact you’ll have will be much smaller. When audiences are thinking, they are too much in their own head and not enough of their attention is with you. When they are feeling however, they are taking things in openly, and then can reflect upon them later on.
So as a good public speaker, you want to deliberately design your presentations for maximum emotional engagement.
And one way of doing this is by not giving them all the information. This might sound counterintuitive at first. When you’re presenting, isn’t your job to transfer knowledge, to provide information? So why shouldn’t you give them all the information?
The reason for why you want to withhold some information instead of spelling it all out is that you want them to be part of the creation of your presentation. If you leave some things unsaid, if you leave some gaps in your presentation, then your audience will automatically, and mostly subconsciously, fill in the gaps. They will become a part of your presentation, each one in his own mind. It’s of course a fine line to walk and requires that you’re really tuned into your audience in order to know how big the gaps should be – after all, if you leave out too much, your audience won’t be able to follow and you’ll lose them.
One of the best ways of becoming a better public presenter – apart from giving presentations, getting coaching and training – is to train yourself subconsciously with a public speaking hypnosis download. This is a simple MP3 file that you can download and listen to whenever you want (or feel you need it), which will give your brain just the right suggestions to improve your public speaking skills.